On the agenda this year are engaging sessions on modulating the microbiome for sports performance, consumer understanding of pre- and probiotics, the importance of the microbiota in the first 1000 days of life, plus sessions looking at the latest microbiome start-up trailblazers and targeting diseases through the microbiome.
In addition, don’t miss key updates from the IPA and dynamic panel discussions will look at how the recent changes to ISAPPs prebiotic definition may be changing the game and how personalised nutrition and wearable devices are starting to alter the shape of research and business.
DAY ONE – 7 February 2018
14:00 – Welcome from the IPA
George Paraskevakos, International Probiotics Association
George has been involved with the probiotic industry since 2007 in which he served in various roles from business development to account management for a globally recognized probiotic producer. During this time, he also served on the IPA Board of Directors including two (2) mandates as President before taking on the association’s leadership role as Executive Director. George’s motivation is to continuously drive the IPA’s positive outreach as the “Global Voice of Probiotics”
Welcome from the Chair
Nathan Gray, NutraIngredients
Nathan oversees news and analysis covering the functional food, supplements, and wellness food industries in Europe and Africa for NutraIngredients. He has a BSc Human Biosciences from the University of Plymouth in the UK, where he specialised in exercise nutrition and science communication. After this he gained a postgraduate certification in Science and Environmental Journalism at the University of Lincoln, UK, where he worked on radio and TV productions in addition to online and print journalism.
Since joining William Reed in 2010, Nathan has worked with NutraIngredients and FoodNavigator across various roles and regions. Areas of interest and expertise include R&D and innovation relating to functional food formulation, health claims regulation, advances in microbiome science, new delivery formats, and partnerships and investments within the industry.
14:10 – First Focus Workshop – Timelines of development: The microbiome in the first 1000 days
Chair: Will Chu, NutraIngredients
The first 1000 days are some of the most important in life. Our health, wellness and development at this time can have a huge and lasting impact.
This pre-conference workshop looks at the key issues of microbiome formation and development – from conception through to infancy – tackling issues of infant health, maternal influence and how new insights into the microbiome and probiotics could help pre-term babies and those born by C-section.
- Lindsay Hall, Quadram Institute
- Dr David A MacIntyre, Imperial College
- Omry Koren, The Azrieli Faculty of Medicine, Bar-Ilan University
- Maria Carmen Collado, Institute of Agrochemistry and Food Technology at the Spanish National Research Council (IATA-CSIC)
16:30 – Light refreshments
17:00 – Innovation & Trailblazers Session
Chair: Nathan Gray, NutraIngredients
Innovations and start-up companies can come in many shapes and forms. In this session we will meet a selection of entrepreneurial start-ups presenting their innovations and mould-breaking approaches to the microbiome, prebiotic and probiotic space.
Together with our innovation panellists, our Trailblazers will discuss the consumer trends and technologies they are tapping into and shine a spotlight on some of the opportunities (and pitfalls) that are out there.
- Kristofer Cook, Carbiotix
- Celine Druart, Université Catholique de Louvain, Belgium
- Lucas Morea, Hyperbiotics
18:30 – Scientific Frontiers session and welcome reception
Poster viewing, drinks and antipasti
The Scientific Frontiers poster session presents the latest state-of-the-art developments related to all aspects of prebiotic, probiotic and microbiome science relevant to health, wellbeing, consumers and industry. Posters have been selected based on abstracts submitted and reviewed by the Scientific Committee.
19:30 – End of Day 1
DAY TWO – 8 February 2018
08:55 – Chairs recap of Day 1 and welcome back
9:00 – 10:30 – SESSION 1: CONSUMER UNDERSTANDING AND ENGAGEMENT
9:00 – Pre and probiotics and gut microbiota: What do consumers understand and where do they go for information?
Maria Gustafsson, Eat Well Global
From gut health and immunity to metabolism and brain health, the emerging science and claims around pre and probiotics are coming at consumer fast and furious. How much of this information do they really understand, and in what types of foods and beverages do they want to find these ingredients? Where are they getting their information from and how good are they at separating fact from fiction? Taking a broad look at the landscape of consumer understanding of the gut microbiota, as well as pre and probiotics, Erin shares evidence about where consumers are today, where they’re headed, and how they can best be reached. This session reveals:
- Where today’s consumers stand on the spectrum of knowledge and understanding of gut microbiota and pre and probiotics
- Which product people want to find pre and probiotics in and where they go to buy them
- The opportunities to use opinion influencers to propel your messages to a wide audience
9:30 – Probiotic opportunity: Where do probiotics fit in consumers’ health regimens today?
Diane K Ray, Natural Marketing Institute (NMI)
Keeping up with evolving consumer attitudes to probiotics is a challenge for any organization. Diane’s presentation unveils up-to-the-minute multi-country research that gives comprehensive insights to current consumer attitudes and behaviours. Understanding these behaviours, through the lens of NMI’s Global Health & Wellness Segmentation, will open the door to new growth opportunities for your business. Data from France, Germany, Italy and the UK will bring consumer attitudes and behaviours to the forefront of your decision making. This is your opportunity to find out:
- How strongly do consumers feel they need probiotics?
- What health conditions do consumers think they are managing or preventing with probiotic supplements?
- How do consumers engage with supplements?
- How important are probiotics, in consumers’ minds, compared to other nutritional supplements?
- How important is clinical support for efficacy?
- How do these attitudes and behaviors vary across consumer segmentation?
10:00 – Probiotics – strategic developments within ingredients, health benefits and client engagement
Ewa Hudson, Lumina Intelligence
Customer satisfaction is becoming the new currency in the digital era of probiotics. Online engagement is the strategy to build brand equity. With a limited number of officially approved health claims in different markets, customer reviews increasingly influence purchase decisions. The disparity between academia, regulators, the industry and empowered product users continues to rise.
Lumina Intelligence is an upcoming service from William Reed that will integrate the voice of empowered product users into strategic analysis whilst zooming in on niche product categories. This presentation will provide an insight into probiotic ingredients and associated health benefits shaping strategic developments of leading brands.
10:30 – Refreshments
11:00 – 12:30 – SESSION 2: SPORTS, PERFORMANCE AND THE MICROBIOME
Chair: Nathan Gray, Senior Editor, NutraIngredients
11:00 – Sports performance and the microbiome – the potential for dietary supplements
Mark Gilbert, FitnessGenes
The will to win is the dominant factor in sport. More than 50% of athletes say they’d take a pill that would turn them into a champion, even if it would cause their death within five years. That means the market is wide open for probiotic supplements that can demonstrably enhance athletic performance. Drawing on his experience working with elite athletes Mark will discuss the essential goals of sports nutrition, and how they can be achieved by manipulating the microbiome through diet and supplementation.
- How creatine helped Linford Christie crack the top three at the Barcelona Olympics
- How the microbiome dictates athletic performance – from amino acid turnover to stress immunity
- Carbs, proteins and fats – the best macronutrients for optimum performance
- The vast potential of microbiome ergogenic aids – and the search for causation evidence
11:30 – The diet and exercise microbiome paradigm
Wiley Barton, Teagasc Food Research Centre, Ireland
The Intestinal microbiome is under investigation as its role in health becomes increasingly evident. To understand the microbiome we must unravel the means by which it is modulated. It is already clear that diet, medication use, and living environment have an important modifying effect. However, recent research now suggests that exercise also plays an important part. As well as novel insights on dietary contributions, Wiley will present evidence to show how exercise influences the structure and function of the gut microbiome and will demonstrate how the microbiome of athletes contributes to their health and performance. Sharing the results of his research he will demonstrate:
• How the microbiome of elite athletes differs from that of the general population
• The enhanced diversity and enriched SCFA profile of athletes and what that means for their performance
• How exercise might improve gut health for everyone
12:00 – Promoting peak performance: Identifying and isolating novel probiotics from athlete microbiomes
Jonathan Scheiman, FitBiomics
Over the past two years Harvard University has recruited and sequenced the microbiome of athletes to identify the bacteria associated with peak performance and recovery. The work reveals unique differences between the microbiomes of athletes and non-athletes, as well as bacteria that change before and after athletic events. This has led to the identification of novel probiotic candidates with the potential to promote recovery and energy metabolism. Based on this work Jonathan describes the specific microbial profile of elite athletes and how probiotics can enhance their performance. His presentation will share:
- Results of pre-clinical studies into a novel probiotic candidate that can break down lactic acid
- Evidence for athletes’ distinct microbial communities and the dynamic behavior of those communities during sports performance and recovery
- How next-generation sequencing can identify novel probiotic species and strains
12:30 – Speed networking, poster viewing and an opportunity to meet our sponsors and exhibitors
Grow your network with a series of four-minute meetings with your fellow attendees.
Introduce yourself to a new contact every time you hear the signal and find out if you’ve got mutual interests that would make a subsequent, more in-depth meeting worthwhile. This is also your chance to explore the Scientific Frontiers posters or find out the latest from our sponsors.
13:00 – Roundtable lunches
Discuss the issues that matter most to you Tables will be hosted by an expert from industry or academia who will lead an informal discussion on an industry hot topic. Join the table that suits you best, subject to availability.
14:00 – Dessert and coffee
14:30 – A solution for winners. How probiotics can maintain gut health for high performance athletes
Dr Lukas Grumet, Institut Allergosan, Graz, Austria
High performance athletes frequently complain of training-induced gastrointestinal problems, including diarrhoea, bloating and pain, which affect both their performance and general health. Institut Allergosan’s work with endurance athletes across Austria, not least the country’s world beating ski team, has identified a probiotic formulation that can put an end to this pernicious problem. Lukas will describe how this formulation has been created, tested and proven. He’ll then go on to discuss how its discovery is set to open up a new market opportunity for probiotic producers, not only with professional athletes, but among today’s growing numbers of high-exercise consumers.
- High performance problem – why endurance athletes find their gastrointestinal health under threat
- High performance solution – how probiotics have been proven to treat and prevent
- High performance team – the work with Allergosan that has made probiotics part of the Austrian ski team’s recipe for success
- High potential opportunity – how this discovery translates into a mass market opportunity for probiotic producers
15:00 – PANEL DEBATE: Regulation and policy: The shifting sands of Europe
Chair: Tim Cutcliffe, NutraIngredients
Experts will discuss a range of important regulatory issues for prebiotics and probiotics including the regulatory stalemate in Europe and how countries like Switzerland and Italy are slowly changing the game. Also up for discussion will be how recent changes to medical device regulation may impact the industry, whether the new ISAPP definition for prebiotics will mean new regulatory issues, and whether medical and pharmaceutical routes offer opportunity.
- Prof Dr Javier Morán, Catholic University of Murcia (UCAM)
- Joshua Baisley, Nutrasource
- Luca Bucchini, Hylobates Consulting
- Dr Elinor McCartney, Pen & Tec Consulting
15:45 – Refreshments
16:15 – Genomic diversity and distribution of Bifidobacterium longum subsp. longum across the human lifespan
Toshitaka Odamaki, Morinaga Milk Industry Company
Gut microbiota composition changes with age, and these aged-related alterations are thought to influence health throughout life. However, a very few species of microbiota, including Bifidobacterium longum subsp. longum, are ubiquitous in the gut microbiota across the human lifespan. To reveal the mechanisms of this unique feature, and what it may mean for human health, Toshitaka and his team recently performed a comparative genome analysis including 113 strains of Bifidobacterium longum subsp. longum, obtained from healthy Japanese subjects up to the age of 98. The results provide a promising foundation for future research, which aims to reveal which strains are the best possible candidates for probiotic products aimed at key life stages.
16:45 – SESSION 3: Scientific Frontiers
Chair: Will Chu, NutraIngredients
The authors of our highest rated Scientific Frontiers abstracts – selected by our Scientific Committee – present key findings and impacts of their research.
17:15 or 17:30 – Chairman’s closing remarks
19:00 – IPA World Congress + Probiota dinner
DAY THREE – 9 February 2018
8:55 – Chairman’s re-cap of Day 2 and welcome back
9:00 – 10:30 – SESSION 4: FROM BUGS TO DRUGS
Chair: Tim Cutcliffe, Reporter, NutraIngredients
9:00 – Challenges and opportunities in targeting diseases through the microbiome
Dr Francisco Guarner, University Hospital Vall d’Hebron, Spain
The impact of microbial colonisation on human health is the subject of many large scale research projects that aim to decipher the composition, structure and function of microbial communities in a range of human niches, including the gut, mouth, vagina and skin. The availability of high through-put sequencing techniques combined with bioinformatics for comparative analysis of datasets means that the field is progressing rapidly. Loss of species diversity in the gut microbiome is commonly reported in individuals affected by common chronic non-communicable diseases, including metabolic, inflammatory and neoplastic disorders. Bi-directional influences between host and microbiota have been proven, and some dysbiotic changes are likely to play a role in the origin of disease.
- Loss of species diversity in the gut microbiome is commonly reported in individuals affected by chronic non-communicable diseases.
- Maintaining gut microbiota diversity is a novel clinical target for health promotion and disease prevention.
- Functional foods and microbiota transplantation are useful tools for improving host-microbial symbiosis.
9:30 – Probiotics as a novel therapeutic in a clinical sample of depressed patients
Caroline Wallace, Queen’s University, Canada
Current research is opening up our understanding of how probiotics can be used in the treatment of several mental health conditions, including depression. Caroline’s presentation summarises progress so far and provides an overview of new research directions. She’ll also take a deep dive into the findings of an exciting pilot study that evaluates the efficacy, safety and tolerabilty of probiotic supplements on symptoms of depression in treatment-naive depressed patients.
- An overview of research to date and what it has to tell us
- Novel data revealing the effectiveness of probiotics in treating depression
- An introduction to theories about the underlying mechanisms that underpin the impact of probiotics on depressive symptoms
- A look ahead to upcoming research that will expand our knowledge
10:00 – Breaking new ground – pre and probiotic interventions from a microbiota perspective
Johanna Maukonen, DuPont Nutrition & Health
The importance of gut microbiota has been clearly demonstrated in multiple studies over recent decades. As a result, we have a good understanding of how probiotics can impact gut heath. However, studies so far have focused on fecal microbiota, which is easier to access than microbiota from other sites along the human gastrointestinal tract. In her presentation, Johanna reveals key learnings from ground breaking studies that have assessed the impact of probiotic interventions on nasal and intestinal tissue microbiota.
10:30 – Refreshments
11:00 – SESSION 5: IPA UPDATES
Chair: George Paraskevakos, Executive Director, International Probiotics Association
Flow Cytometry: A new way of measuring bacterial viability in probiotic products?
Martin Wilkinson, Associate Professor in Food Microbiology, University of Limerick, Ireland
Flow cytometry is a proven method in many areas of scientific research. Martin’s presentation offers a comprehensive review of its potential as rapid means of enumerating probiotics in foods and supplements, and of assessing their bacterial viability. Focusing on studies undertaken for the International Probiotics Association, he will show that FCM delivers findings that correlate well with other tried and tested methodologies, and does so faster and with greater reproducibility than other tried and tested methodologies. Revealing the results of the study and its implications he will show that:
- FCM enumeration using staining combinations performs well for analysis of highly concentrated and fresh culture preparations
- FCM analysis of starter cultures during storage of foods yields quantitative data on cellular sub-populations and an alternative source of insight into population dynamics.
- FCM-based assays offer an alternative probiotic enumeration method to plate counting
- Effective clean-up steps to are vital to achieve optimal results
- The definitions and relationships between cell viability and cell vitality need to be clarified and integrated into future FCM enumeration methodologies.
The IPA Manufacturing Committee Guidelines
Kevin Mehring, UAS Labs and Vice President of the IPA
Within weeks of its publication Kevin Mehring joins us for a detailed discussion of the IPA’s best practice guidelines for probiotic manufacture. The guidelines aim to ensure consistent quality and efficacy of probiotic products worldwide and promise vital support for regulatory bodies as they develop the regulatory frameworks that will govern our industry’s future. Kevin’s presentation will reveal the detailed implications of the guidelines, how they’ve been compiled and why adherence to this voluntary code will be good for your business today and in the future.
- Be recognised as a ‘quality player’ – how adhering to the guidelines will protect your reputation and business viability
- A guide for regulators – how regulators will depend on the guidelines to evaluate products and protect consumers
- The future of the guide – the evolution of an IPA Seal of Approval programme
Probiotic futures: A global analysis of current clinical trials and what they mean for our industry
Ger Rijkers, Professor of Biomedical and Life Sciences, University College Roosevelt, the Netherlands
On behalf of the IPA, Ger and his team have completed a comprehensive review of over 1,000 probiotics related clinical trials currently underway worldwide. This gives the industry its first global snapshot of what’s happening in the world of probiotics; the scientific discoveries we can expect to see over the next five years and the product development opportunities they will give rise to. To complete the review, he has interrogated data from the US National Institute of Health and the World Health Organisation, making this the most both exhaustive and reliable information source available.
He will reveal:
- What’s happening where – and why Europe has emerged as a global hot spot for probiotic research and innovation
- What’s coming next –neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinsons and Alzheimers heads the list of treatment areas currently under scrutiny
- What’s in it for you – implications for your product development pipeline and why you need to engage with the research now
12:00 – Big data meets expert insight: How advanced analytics accelerate research and product validation for NIZO
Jos Boekhorst, Project Manager Bioinformatics, Microbiomics Group, NIZO
The application of data analytics throughout the discovery and validation pipeline is accelerating product development and strengthening NIZO’s ability to draw reliable conclusions on the relationship between microbiota and overall health. Jos will demonstrate how NIZO is using data analytics, bioinformatics and advanced visualization tools to complement and enhance the work of its experts in fermentation, gut health, immunity and food safety. To demonstrate how this works in practice, he will reveal the working processes used in a recent project that has led to the discovery of valuable information about the interplay between diet, microbiota and the small intestine.
- Tools and methodologies – how NIZO is using technology to interrogate data and test hypotheses
- Enhancing human performance – how NIZO’s experts use technology to work faster and smarter
- A proof of concept study – how minimally invasive sampling and analytics has helped NIZO identify changes in the small intestine microbiota induced by high protein and high carbohydrate diets
12:30 – PANEL DEBATE: Future Focus: Personalised nutrition and the Microbiome
Chair: Nathan Gray, Senior Editor, NutraIngredients
Big data, wearable technology, personalised analysis, and the digital shopping revolution are all providing huge opportunities for companies and entrepreneurs looking to innovate in the microbiome area. Our panel of experts will discuss the recent technology explosion to identify what’s capturing and holding consumer interest most powerfully and discuss what the industry’s reaction should be – how businesses should engage with this revolution, and how it will impact the products they sell.
1:15 – Closing remarks and look to the future
Nathan Gray, NutraIngredients and George Paraskevakos, International Probiotics Association
1:30 – Networking lunch
2:30 – Departures